Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Notes from 35,000 Feet

Look up in the sky! See me waving?

It turns out my flight to San Fran is on Virgin America, not US Airways. It’s a sad tale I’m sure but these are the kinds of surprises you get when someone else books travel for you.

Come to think of it, I have no idea what hotel I’m staying at either. Is it Marriot or Courtyard by Marriot? Something like that. No worries. I have five hours to look at my Outlook calendar where I (albeit absent mindedly) cut and pasted the details under today’s date. There is also the email confirmation which I filed in my “Travel” folder and forwarded to my dear hubby so he’d have it too. Plus, I’m with the co-worker who booked the hotel... and the flight… and the car rental. Like I said, no worries.

Some of my old carny friends may be quite shocked at my laissez-faire attitude today. Just a few years ago, I would have spent a significant amount of time creating a detailed itinerary, formatting it to picturesque perfection, and printing it in triplicate. Additionally, I would have mapped my hour-by-hour plans and corresponding weather forecast to a wardrobe chart and packing list in Excel.

Oh yes, they used to laugh at me. They also used to borrow my packing lists for their own reference.

More recently I’ve learned that not every detail is worth the time or energy of obsessing over. I still do some mental “mapping” and yes, I do check the weather. Goodness knows I don’t want to arrive at a semi-formal event on a hot beach wearing my studded leather jumpsuit.

As in the rest of my life, I’ve learned to pick my battles. I’ve learned that some percentage of the stress in my life was wholly self-inflicted.

For a reward, some of the time which would have gone into obsessing over my itinerary went to doing a conga line with my kids last night. Yeppers. Nothing says happiness like a good conga line.

Next time you’re in a room full of miserable people, give it a try. Either it will be an immediate mood lifter or you’ll be tarred and feathered. In my book, it’s worth the risk.

Now that I am sitting here in seat 16C (with a foot repeatedly clunking into the back of me from seat 17C), I have no worries whatsoever about whether I'll get to my hotel or if I’ll go to my business dinner wearing a tutu.

I am so enjoying the memory of the conga line around my house, the raucous laughter and the cute little buns of my babies wiggling in time to the “dut-dut dut-dut dah DA!”

No regrets whatsoever.

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Sarah said...

it's 9:12 in sf. it's ok to go to bed now. nite nite. :)

plainolebob said...

yeah yeah while we are here toiling over the blog deadlines, your flying around eating air line peanuts, enjoying the in house spa, i am not saving you no beer.
so take that miss uppity up. jk, lmao, better times i hope you have.

La Jenno said...

I'm glad to have stumbled upon this gem of a blog in the google forums. :) Glad that Virgin got you there safely and... which hotel did you end up at anyways? Well, I hope they have a nice cushy bed for you to sleep on anyway.

I'd have to agree that a lot of stress in life is often self-inflicted since worrying involves a wholly unproductive thought process.... I know I certainly do my fair share, although I'm getting better. I have a feeling I just might find some really, dead useful life strategies reading you blogs, though.

Hope this finds you well-rested and ready to face an awesome day!

Charlene said...

Actually Bob, I really did feel like I was living the high life on Virgin. Best airline ever.

La Jenno - thanks so much for the great comment, I really appreciate it and hope you continue to enjoy my site. Cheers!

Bruce Coltin said...

Are you remembering to maintain your balance? Do you want me to send you frequent reminders?

Charlene said...

My balance was excellent during the conga line - oh wait, actually I did fall down once! :-)

Lou said...

I hear you completely- especially about the stress in your life being self-inflicted. I am so that person! But I'm starting to challenge that part of myself and change. It's a long process though.

Have fun in San Fran! Cool blog by the way. :)

Charlene said...

Thanks Lou and all the best with your own "journey." A process I know!

jmvcep said...

So what color tutu did you end up wearing?

Shawn said...

Happy Saturday Sharefest! Just visiting over from SITS-----I too live in the Boston area---hope you can come over and visit my blog when you get a chance....

Charlene said...

Hi Shawn! I'm loving SITS - thanks! I'll pop right over!

Fishbowl said...

I love to hear about your detail oriented-ness, I always worry about being too much so, but to hear of someone else reminds me it can also be a good thing! (like yer friends borrowing yer packing lists) Happy saturday sits fest!!

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